The Hero’s Journey @ The Stony Island Arts Bank

Sophomores in the Stories class visited the Stony Island Arts Bank, to observe firsthand the acts of cultural preservation that some have considered heroic. In the third unit of this Humanities course, students will explore stories of individuals who have been regarded by various cultures as “heroes,” observing the patterns that these stories tend to take. This Field Experience asks students to investigate the career of a real-life character regarded as a “hero” in Chicago: Theaster Gates. So many thanks to our orientation guide, Maya Jahmil Wallace for her knowledge and enthusiasm.


The purpose of this Field Experience is to investigate the guiding question, how do non-fictional heroes face mythical paths to heroism?.


Students will engage in a self-guided tour in addition to orientation from the staff. Students will identify at least two pieces of evidence — contents form the Arts Bank’s archive — that can serve as evidence in building an argument as to Gate’s status as “hero” for the community he claims to serve. Once we return, this evidence will be included in a short evaluative statement.